March 23, 2017

UK Uses Two Blocked Shot to Hold Off Wichita State, 65-62

20 March 2017, 10:49 | Joan Schultz

How Kentucky's freshmen backcourt saved the Wildcats from an early NCAA tournament exit

No. 2 Kentucky outlasts No. 10 Wichita State in another classic NCAA Tournament slugfest

Louisville has taken a 36-28 halftime lead over MI by hitting 3-pointers - something the Wolverines usually do. They squeezed 11 turnovers out of a Wichita team that is generally solid at taking care of the basketball.

Monk put Kentucky up five again with a 3-pointer.

There were a few brief moments when it appeared Adebayo might not be on the floor in the clutch. "Three steals. Derek Willis".

Wichita State's Landry Shamet scored 20 points, 13 in the final 7 minutes, 25 seconds to rally the Shockers.

Morris picked up three fouls, a small price to pay for his performance and the feeling of freedom.

"But I'm the bad guy for drawing attention to her".

Three seasons later, the players are different, the seeds flipped and the talent still tilted toward the NBA-ready Wildcats. Bam Adebayo had 15 points and 18 rebounds in Kentucky's opening win over Northern Kentucky, but he's been held to two points and five rebounds.

De'Aaron Fox responded with a drive and dunk for Kentucky ...

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The Shockers cut the lead to 61-58 on a three by Zach Brown and switched to a zone defense. Notice that it's Dominique Hawkins who is guarding Shamet, then Adebayo drops over at the last second, leaving Conner Frankamp wide open. "If we lose a game, I don't want people saying, 'They were freshmen, they couldn't do this, they couldn't do that.' That's done with". "I saw nobody behind my defender".

"DC has done so much for me as a player and friend", Jerry Rice added.

"I just go out there and play basketball", Adebayo said. Fox, with emphasis, flushed the dunk and ignited the crowd as Kentucky pulled ahead to lead by seven points with four minutes left in play.

Two turnovers in two minutes midway through the half by guard Daishon Smith hurt, although only one led to a basket. I've got to devote all my energy preparing for this battle and I would hope you can respect my family's privacy as I begin this challenge. "We know we can play better".

BOTTOM LINE: It's a flashback to 2014, when 35-0 Wichita State lost to Kentucky 78-76 in the second round.

While the first half was played at a slow, low-scoring pace (26-24 Kentucky at halftime), the teams exchanged big shots late and delivered a thrilling finish that allowed the showdown to live up to all the hype. "It's just a new game for us". I told the trainers in between that inning, went back out and it stayed tight the whole time. That is why a lot of people were exhausted. "We fight, we play hard, we go out there and just play". They hadn't played a team with elite athletic ability since November and it showed. Adebayo had 13 points and 10 rebounds, and finished with the game's most important play.

"Someone from the NCAA came and got my name and told me I could no longer tweet about her because "it made her upset.' I guess it didn't make anyone else upset when she told Malik Monk to get in the weight room or told Isaiah Briscoe to buy some bigger shorts or told Calipari to 'shut the f-ck up" or told Roger Ayers he is garbage or any of the other classy things she yelled between F-bombs", Franklin said.

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